I Lied!!

Ok...so my '12 Days of Treats' didn't work so well this year and I apologize. But give me a break I'm 5 months pregnant! ;) hehehe. I have been so busy and I just haven't had much energy to post any new recipe (what is wrong with me???). I hope you all understand and hopefully I get out of this slump.

I cannot believe there are only 3 days until Christmas and I'm so excited this year to spend it with my family. We'll probably cook/bake a few treats, so I will try to post some of them.

Hope all of you have a Merry Christmas!!


Day 2: Buckeyes

For Day 2 of our '12 Days of Treats' I am going to share another 'Brown Eyed Baker' recipe. For all of you chocolate/peanut butter fanatics, this is right up your alley.

I think I've mentioned before that I get email updates from Brown Eyed Baker every time she posts a new recipe. But I'm not sure if it's a good thing or a bad thing, because every time I see an email from 'Brown Eyed Baker' I have to open it, and then that usually leads to 'I have to make that!'. So I go to the kitchen and make the treats and then stuff my face with all the delicious little goodies. :)
But I do have to tell you that I did share alot of my Buckeyes this time. It is the season of giving, right??? I'll let other people stuff their faces with these delicious treats. hehehe

These are perfect to make for neighbor gifts, teacher gifts, friends, etc. because it makes so many (7-8 dozen). They're a little time consuming, but whoever you share these with will appreciate it and love you forever. Well....maybe. :)

Alright, there you go. Now get in your kitchen and start making some Buckeyes.

Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

from: browneyedbaker.com

1 ½ cups peanut butter
6 cups powdered sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
¼ cup shortening

1. Line cookie sheet with wax paper. Mix together butter, peanut butter, sugar, and vanilla with a wooden spoon in a large bowl.
2. Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Set them on prepared cookie sheet and insert toothpick into each ball. Chill in freezer until hard, approximately 30 minutes.
3. Melt chocolate chips and shortening over medium-high heat. Remove the pan from heat. Dip balls in chocolate and place back on cookie sheet. Refrigerate until chocolate is set, approximately 2 hours.

Store in airtight container in refrigerator.

Some tips on making buckeyes:
• I find it best to mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl with a wooden spoon. It will take some time to all come together and takes a lot of patience and elbow grease!
• The mixture WILL be pretty dry and crumbly, so when shaping the balls you will need to press the mixture together before rolling it into a ball.
• In order to avoid the toothpick holes at the top of the peanut butter balls, an alternative would be using something like a dipper for coloring eggs to lower the balls into the chocolate.

• This recipe yields 7-8 dozen buckeyes.


12 Days of Treats! Day 1: Monkey Bread

So I have been back and forth deciding if I wanted to do the '12 Days of Treats' this year. If some of you don't know, I am about 5 months pregnant right now, and lately I haven't felt like cooking. Sad huh? Nothing sounds good or even tastes the same, but I decided I would go ahead and try to share some tasty treats with all of you.

For our first treat I wanted to share Monkey Bread.

 I don't know if all of you have tried this, but it is yummy! My Mom used to make this every year on our annual Sipapu Ski trip. I hadn't made it in years, and then I saw this recipe on Brown Eyed Baker and had to give it a try.
My Mother always made hers using the canned Pillsbury biscuits, but the Brown Eyed Baker makes hers from scratch. It's a little extra effort, but it is soooo worth it.

I did change it just a little bit. My Mom always drizzled a brown sugar glaze over the pieces of dough before baking it, so I decided to do that with this recipe also. I didn't use all of the glaze (I didn't want it too sweet). But you can add as much as your heart desires. :)
If you're looking for a delicous Christmas treat to share with your family then give this one a try. I promise you'll love it!

Monkey Bread
From: Brown Eyed Baker

4 tbsp. unsalted butter; divided: 2 tbsp. softened and 2 tbsp. melted
1 C. milk, warm (about 110 degrees)
1/3 C. Water (about 110 degrees)
1/4 C. granulated sugar
1 pkg. instant yeast
3 1/4 C. All-purpose flour, plus extra for surface
2 tsp. Salt

Cinnamon-Sugar coating
1 C. Sugar
2 tsp. Cinnamon

1/4 C. Butter/Margarine
1/2 C. packed Brown sugar

Glaze (to drizzle on top after baking):
1 C. Confectioners’ Sugar
2 tbsp. milk

1. Butter Bundt pan with 2 tablespoons softened butter. Set aside.
2. In a large measuring cup, mix together milk, water, melted butter, sugar and yeast. Mix flour and salt in standing mixer fitted with dough hook. Turn machine to low and slowly add milk mixture. After dough comes together, increase speed to medium and mix until dough is shiny and smooth, 6 to 7 minutes. Turn dough onto lightly floured counter and knead briefly to form smooth, round ball. Coat large bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Place dough in bowl and coat surface of dough with cooking spray. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in a draft-free area until dough doubles in size, 50 to 60 minutes.
3. For the sugar coating: While the dough is rising, mix brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl. Place melted butter in second bowl. Set aside.
4. To form the bread: Gently remove the dough from the bowl, and pat into a rough 8-inch square. Using a bench scraper or knife, cut dough into 64 pieces.
5. Roll each dough piece into a ball. Working one at a time, dip the balls into the melted butter, allowing excess butter to drip back into the bowl. Roll in the brown sugar mixture, and then layer balls in the Bundt pan, staggering seams where dough balls meet as you build layers.
6. Cover the Bundt pan tightly with plastic wrap and place in draft-free area until dough balls are puffy and have risen 1 to 2 inches from top of pan, 50 to 70 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
7. After the dough balls have risen a second time put together your glaze. In a small saucepan, melt the 1/2 C. Butter. Add the brown sugar and heat over medium heat for 1 minute. Let cool for a minute and then pour over the dough balls.
8. Bake your monkey bread until the top is deep brown and caramel begins to bubble around the edges, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a platter and allow to cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
9. For the glaze: While the bread cools, whisk the confectioners’ sugar and milk in a small bowl until the lumps are gone. Using a whisk, drizzle the glaze over the monkey bread, letting it run over top and down the sides of the bread. Serve warm.

*Note from Brown Eyed Baker: To make without a stand mixer: In step 2, mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the flour, then add the milk mixture to the well. Using a wooden spoon, stir until the dough becomes shaggy and is difficult to stir. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and begin to knead, incorporating the shaggy scraps back into the dough. Knead until dough is smooth and satiny, about 10 minutes. Shape into a taut ball and proceed as directed.